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During National Adoption Awareness Month, we will introduce you to numerous guests, highlighting many parts of the adoption journey. Today’s blog comes from adoptive mom, Faith Dea. She found our call for guest writers on Instagram and hopped on the opportunity to share a little bit about her family and son, who she adopted through the foster care system. We’re so excited to highlight the foster-to-adopt perspective, one that we don’t focus too often on as we guide our families through domestic infant adoption. Here are Faith’s words on her family, religion, and a typical day-in-the-life…

By Faith Dea

We adopted through the foster care system in California back in 2017. It took us a while to get licensed due to work schedules and summer vacation trips, but we eventually became licensed with a private adoption agency. Then we waited. Five months passed and we finally got a call for a single placement with a sibling set.

We said “yes!” to that first call and our son and daughter came to us when he was just about to turn four and she, two and a half. Parental rights were expected to be terminated and social workers had already sifted through possible kinship care/adoption. No one was willing or able to take them permanently.

Around this time we found out we would have to move out of state again with military orders, so we jumped right into an expedited case plan for permanency. Miraculously, adoption happened just under one year despite the county social worker previously stating that would be impossible! Our adoption agency truly advocated for us.

This story examines a typical day for us with our son. He knows he left one family and entered another, bringing along all his memories. He has come to understand and accept our love and commitment to care for him.

 

Weekday Mornings: A Day In The Life Of An Adoptive Family  

This morning I entered the house as usual from my power walk. You and brother were doing your morning routine as usual. Right away you mention that you’re ready for breakfast. It was not yet 7am. I know you are more than familiar with the drill: mom takes off her shoes, takes earbuds out, goes into her room and gets her shower. Kids continue with their morning routine and enjoy time to play.  Then we have breakfast, still in plenty of time before loading up to go to school.

Instead of responding and reminding you of the routine, I go check on sister in her room. While doing this, I hear you whining. Not too loud, but noticeable. You’re grumpy about not getting breakfast immediately upon seeing me return home. But the morning routine is nothing new for you. We’ve been doing it for months now. Are you that hungry? Is this rebellion or maybe an attempt to control what is happening? Is there a good reason you’re mad at me and showing it as soon as I physically show up? Dad is still home and I know you’re conscious of that, hence the quiet show of disapproval.

It’s not rebellion. It’s not a hungry tummy, although I can’t feel what your stomach actually feels, but I suspect that it has to do with the same thing I see in you with other negative behaviors. Dad doesn’t get to see most of your negative behaviors because you only put them on display for me, your adoptive mother. Yay for me! Just such a thrill to see you mad at me and get all worked up over things I’m saying or directing. Often, it’s simply my presence that provokes whatever it is deep inside. Yes, I believe it’s something else deep inside you.

I am your mother. You know you had a mother before me. You also had an auntie that took that motherly role in your life. You liked that. She gave you things you liked. You two attached, I believe in a very healthy way. Then I show up.

I go on to take my shower without confronting you. I know you. You’ll be fine. Sure enough, when I emerge from my bedroom, dad’s left for work by then and what are you up to? Happily playing Legos on the living room floor with brother. Again, no surprise to me. But now it’s time to eat. Do you come running, showing that you’re starving and can’t wait to gobble down a big bowl of your favorite cereal? No, not at all. You continue playing for a few minutes.

I pour your cereal, noting your countenance as you come to the table. No sign of anything negative. No sigh of relief that mom has finally come through to meet a dire need in your life. Just a normal sit-down-and-eat kind of morning.

“Father,” I speak in prayer before my son takes the first bite.

“Thank you for this food today. You promised to give your people food to eat and clothes to wear every day. Right now, Daniel is about to eat this cereal and he’s wearing clothes. Thank you for giving us these things! You provide for us so well! And I want to thank you for that because You are a good God and you keep your promises. You take such good care of us every day. In Jesus name, Amen.”

I had thought of maybe confronting you with the reason for your bad attitude toward me this morning. I know you could probably take it well and learn something. But I decided, by God’s grace, to just praise the Lord in audible prayer. A prayer that maybe could continue nurturing those things we’re trying to build in you; things about Who our heavenly Father is and what dependence on Him looks like each and every day. He is good and His goodness is enough to satisfy the hungry soul. Our mother-son relationship will have to be built on that foundation first.

I am a Christian, military wife, bio/foster/adoptive mother, active church member, substitute teacher, and mentor. I enjoy gardening, power walks, hiking with my husband, cooking from scratch, and writing. Leading and participating in women’s ministries is also an enjoyable part of my life.

I have been married for 15 years. My husband Brian is currently a Lt.Col., having just transitioned over into the Space Force. He has given me a life I could have never imagined. We get to move all over the country and overseas, enjoying new life-long friendships at each location.

I’ve always journaled. I relish the fact that I’ve been given the opportunity to put my thoughts into meaningful words. I would like to use this means of communication more and more to inspire, motivate, and encourage others, including my own children as they grow up. Writing has also been therapeutic for myself as I try and unpack long buried memories, emotions, and how I’m learning from each situation or experience. Writing about adoption and foster care has been a recent favorite topic.